I reside in Portugal on an investment visa called a “Golden Visa” which only requires me to reside in Portugal for seven days a year. I want to move to New York on an EB-5 visa. What issues might I encounter attempting to immigrate to the U.S. while residing in Portugal, and are there rules in the EB-5 program which prohibit the participation in investment immigration programs in multiple countries? What can you say from experience with immigrant investors in my position?
That is an interesting question. There are no rules/restrictions regarding investment immigration programs in multiple countries; however, as far as U.S. immigration laws are concerned regarding the concept of permanent residence, (which is what you would be given when you successfully process through the immigrant investor processing), you are declaring your intent to maintain permanent residence in the U.S.(ie., presence in the U.S. (more than six months out of the year), maintenance of residence/home in the U.S., paying taxes in the U.S., etc). Sounds like in your case this would not conflict with your residence requirement in Portugal since it only requires you to be in Portugal seven days a year.
Once you obtain a U.S. green card, you have permanent residency, which may be revoked if you are out of the U.S. for more than one year (and maybe less) or fail to pay U.S. taxes. Having permanent residency in multiple countries may also be an issue, as your green card can be revoked if you move to another country intending to live there permanently.
U.S. lawful permanent residence (green card) is for individuals who wish to reside permanently in the United States. There is no prohibition against a green card holder owning property, making investments, or having residences in other countries, but the green card holder should have permanent residence in the United States. Certain activity, including extended absences from the U.S. of longer than six months, may raise a presumption that a green card holder has abandoned his or her intent to permanently reside in the United States. As long as the person maintains the intent to be a U.S. permanent resident and does not abandon the green card by failing to enter the U.S. frequently enough, there is no prohibition against participating in investment programs in multiple countries. Those other countries might have different rules, so it would be wise to check with a lawyer admitted in those jurisdictions.
There are minimum residency issues which need to be addressed, along with other complicated immigration issues you need to consider carefully prior to making a move.
DISCLAIMER: the information found on this website is intended to be general information; it is not legal or financial advice. Specific legal or financial advice can only be given by a licensed professional with full knowledge of all the facts and circumstances of your particular situation. You should seek consultation with legal, immigration, and financial experts prior to participating in the EB-5 program. Posting a question on this website does not create an attorney-client relationship. All questions you post will be available to the public: do not include confidential information in your question.